NJSGA Caddie Scholars Celebrated at 2021 Reception
KENILWORTH, N.J. – The New Jersey State Golf Association’s Caddie Scholarship Foundation celebrated its 74th year of service when it hosted its annual caddie scholars’ reception at Galloping Hill Golf Course in Kenilworth on Thursday, August 13.
"Our motto is education is the most precious gift,” said Ben Del Vento, Sr., Caddie Scholarship Foundation Chairman. “That's why we have caddie scholarships. That's what we believe in. And no qualified caddie in 74 years has been denied a scholarship. That's quite an achievement."
Over 35 caddies were in attendance, including members of their immediate families, current and former caddie scholars, guest speakers, and board members of the NJSGA.
The NJSGA Caddie Scholarship Foundation has been a staple to youth for over 74 years in providing financial assistance to deserving member club caddies pursuing higher education. Since 1947, it has raised more than $16 million in donations to provide college scholarship awards to 3,100 caddies.
Caddie scholars are selected based on their academic performance, financial need, and length and quality of service as a caddie. Scholarships are renewable for up to four years of undergraduate study.
In 2020, Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield Township generously donated $74,000, becoming the top donor. Along with Baltusrol, Echo Lake Country Club, The Ridgewood Country Club, Manasquan River Golf Club and Morris County Golf Club all contributed sizeable donations totaling an astounding $297,000.
“We have a lot of people to thank,” Bill King, Caddie Scholarship Director expressed. “When you're back at your clubs, make sure you thank the caddie manager, the golf professional, the president, the board members, and the club reps for being involved. The club members help drive the funds from the clubs and the members to us, so that we can get them out for scholarships. Without these relationships, we can't get the funds through."
Eva Mosquera, Casey Heintz, Nicholas Werbaneth and former caddie scholar Peter Kuntz all demonstrated their appreciation for the NJSGA Caddie Scholarship Foundation, speaking at the reception. One caddie in particular, Eva Mosquera has been caddying since she was 14 at Echo Lake Country Club.
“I was very shy, said Mosquera. “I'm very happy that I got to have a place where I came of that shell and became confident. I carried that into my experience at school, where I ran for student government."
Mosquera is headed Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where she will study to become an aerospace engineer.
“I really appreciate the opportunity to feed my dream with the support of others. Thank you so much to everyone for supporting the caddies in their life."
Sheila and Mike Menedez, Directors of Education announced that 157 caddies earned scholarships amounting in $667,000. Additionally, the Caddie Scholarship Foundation owns a stellar graduation rate of 96%.
In recognition and appreciation; Mary Parker, trustee of the Mary Reinhart Stackhouse Foundation was honored for her outstanding support and continued generous dedicated contributions to the NJSGA Caddie Scholarship Foundation. Her son, J.R. Parker received the award on behalf of his mother, Mary Parker.
To learn more about the NJSGA Caddie Scholarship Foundation and donating, click here.